Biden expresses support for his son Hunter after guilty verdict

"Jill and I love our son, and we are very proud of the man he has become today," wrote Biden.

Hunter Biden, hijo del presidente Joe Biden', acompañado de su madre, la primera dama, Jill Biden, y su esposa, Melissa Cohen Biden, sale del tribunal federal tras escuchar el veredicto, el martes11 de junio de 2024, en Wilmington, Delaware. (AP Foto/Mat AP (Matt Slocum/AP)

WASHINGTON (AP) — President Joe Biden stayed away from the courtroom where his son Hunter was being tried for serious firearms possession charges to avoid any appearance of interference, but his quick reaction to the guilty verdict issued by the jury on Tuesday revealed where his heart has been all along.


"Jill and I love our son, and we are very proud of the man he has become today," Biden wrote. "Many families with a loved one who has struggled with addiction understand the feeling of pride when they see someone they love move forward and show such strength and resilience in their recovery."


After the announcement of the verdict, the White House canceled the scheduled press briefing with Press Secretary Karine Jean-Pierre, and announced that Biden would speak in the afternoon in Delaware.

Biden's advisors and allies had privately expressed concern about the cost that a guilty verdict would have for the 81-year-old president, whose public life has been intertwined with personal loss. They point out that the president is less concerned about any personal or political cost he may incur than as the father of a son who, just a few years ago, managed to overcome a serious drug addiction.

The verdict was issued shortly before the president delivered a speech on his government's efforts to limit gun violence and strengthen the enforcement of related laws, at a conference organized by the Everytown for Gun Safety Action Fund in Washington.

From there, Biden will travel to his home in Delaware on Tuesday afternoon, where he is expected to meet with his family, including Hunter, before departing for Italy on Wednesday morning to attend the G7 summit. Biden spent more time than usual in Wilmington while the trial was ongoing, as a show of support for Hunter.

The First Lady, Jill Biden, attended the trial almost every day, and made a 24-hour trip from France to be present on Friday for the testimonies, but she could not be there on Tuesday when the verdict was read. She arrived at the courthouse just a few minutes after the jury foreperson chanted the word "guilty" three times. Other family members were also present at the trial.

The president did not attend the court, but he closely followed the process, receiving frequent updates from the first lady. However, every day, when Hunter arrived at the courthouse, as he crossed the doors, he passed by a portrait of his father hanging on a wall.

In his own statement, Hunter Biden, like his father, spoke about family ties and his recovery process.

"Today, more than disappointed by the outcome, I am grateful for the love and support I received this week from Melissa, my family, my friends, and my community," said Hunter Biden in a statement, mentioning his wife first. "Recovery is possible by the grace of God, and I am blessed to experience that gift one day at a time."


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